Family-like Care for Taiwan High-risk Children

by The Mustard Seed Mission
Family-like Care for Taiwan High-risk Children
Family-like Care for Taiwan High-risk Children
Family-like Care for Taiwan High-risk Children
Family-like Care for Taiwan High-risk Children
Family-like Care for Taiwan High-risk Children
Family-like Care for Taiwan High-risk Children
Family-like Care for Taiwan High-risk Children
Family-like Care for Taiwan High-risk Children
Family-like Care for Taiwan High-risk Children
Family-like Care for Taiwan High-risk Children
Family-like Care for Taiwan High-risk Children
Family-like Care for Taiwan High-risk Children

 "After the children started the journey of playing baseball, their facial expression and appearance became much more confident," the social worker happily shared.

The Mustard Seed Youth Home did not have any established baseball team until last summer but the level of interest in baseball among teenagers has been growing. It all started with the arrival of a newcomer, Xiaoru, who is a pitcher for the school baseball team. 

Xiaoru is a teenager with a quiet personality, most of the time, he remains silent and keeps his head down in the corner. Although he has little interaction with people, during the class break, he will proactively go to the field to practice baseball pitch skills. 

Xiaoru’s focused and confident appearance attracted the other youngsters. This triggered their curiosity to learn more about baseball games. Through the participation of several practice sessions, everyone became so interested in devoting further to baseball training that they further discussed with each other about the idea of organizing their own baseball team.

In the beginning, the baseball team has no professional coaching available for them to pursue depth training. As a result, the players could only practice the skills of pitching on their own. Fortunately, after being referred by the community, former professional baseball players who returned to serve in their hometowns joined, and the team began to have systematic and intensive practice sessions, ranging from warm-ups, and batting skills, to physical fitness, defense, and other ability training.  Captain Xiaoru said, "The current training courses are as solid as those of the school team, and I have also been exposed to a lot of knowledge and prospects in the field of baseball." Accompanied by the coach, the players also showed their extraordinary athletic talents and even had the goal of pursuing their dreams.

A few days ago, the coach took the team to watch a professional baseball game. Seeing the fighting spirit of the players wearing exclusive jerseys on the field inspired the soul of “being a baseball pro“ among teenagers. They hoped that they would also have the opportunity to wear the exclusive team uniforms and strive for honor on behalf of the Home. Now there are 20 members in this baseball team, whether they are pitchers, hitters, or catchers, they are more proficient in passing and catching the ball, and their response to the speed is also above the standard. We believe that as long as they persevere, their dream of standing on the stage of the game is not far ahead!

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When Pastor Tsai and his wife, Mrs. Tsai, began serving in Xiangshan, Hsinchu 20 years ago, they noticed that there were junior high school students roaming the streets. Mrs. Tsai took them home for a meal. She asked the children why they wandered after school and they replied, "There was no one at home." Their eyes said, I am thirsting for home! But "going home" was something these children could only wish for.

At first, Mrs. Tsai prepared meals for only one child, then the children shared news about this special mealtime with friends, and there were at most 20 children eating together at a time. Mrs. Tsai learned that most children were born into a family of single-parent household or grandparenting, and their caregivers were long-hours workers (typically working until 10 p.m.), such as formworkers, rebar workers and temps. Consequently, these children were home alone or roaming the streets much of the time. 

To ensure the children got proper care, Pastor Tsai and Mrs. Tsai went to the children's guardians and got permission from them to host children in church on weekends, which gave the children opportunities to enjoy each other's company and learn positive character and good behavior from Pastor Tsai and Mrs. Tsai.

At its very beginning, the gathering was to keep children from wandering the neighborhood on holidays. As time went on, it was this care and company that created a sense of belonging for the kids and helped them feel at home. When the kids grew up and entered the workforce, they still went back to visit Pastor Tsai and Mrs. Tsaion weekends or holidays.

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Dongdong shared his story: "If the pastor hadn't found me on the street and brought me into i-ro i-ro Children's Home, I might be hiding every day from loan-shark harassment, and I will not know what happens tomorrow. i-ro i-ro Children's Home is my shelter and a safe home.”

Dongdong's parents divorced when he was very little, and he lived with his father who is physically disabled. Because his father was unable to work and also not able to take care of Dongdong, Dongdong didn't take shower often so he smell bad and there was no one to watch him learn, causing learning disabilities. His mother works in a karaoke, and she has a lot of financial debts and complicated friendships. However, when Dongdong was in middle school, his mother began to ask Dongdong to work as a free waiter (child labor) to receive tips and even asked him to drink with guests, which caused Dongdong to stop learning, unable to attend classes stably, being late and absent from class, and learning was depressed.

The pastor found Dongdong on the street and learned about Dongdong’s family situation. The pastor helped Dongdong to stay in i-ro i-ro Children's Home. In the i-ro i-ro Children's Home, Dongdong has learned to take care of himself and go to school stably. In addition, Dongdong refused to work in the karaoke where his mother works in.

Now under the protection of i-ro i-ro Children's Home, Dongdong has the opportunity to learn jazz drums. He is now full of confidence and positive energy. Seeing his growth, we believe that the pain in his heart has slowly healed and been filled with love.

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“With the faith and hope small as the mustard seed to build a community support network to convey God's love by giving and help.” This is the aim of the Mustard Seed Mission (MSM). MSM works recently in the fields of underprivileged families, child protection, elders, indigenous peoples, new residents, and youth training to integrate and achieve 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

For the children in Pei-Hsin Home, a monthly daily schedule is designed. According to the schedule, the children usually need to follow the daily routine and participate in a series of activities arranged such as drying flowers, jazz drums, guitar, or health education during the day, and choose their favorite reading materials and read together in the large classroom in the evening. The group courses also incorporate the themes of SDGs to enrich the children’s life.

Through the brief introduction of the video, the children understand that the 17 indicators of SDGs are closely related to their own living environment. The life support teacher will lead the children to reflect after each course. In the recent "SDG6 Clean Water and Sanitation" course, we arranged for the children to visit the Water Resources Center. Every link from the buildings to the sewage treatment is connected with the course. The water quality was tested for its pH, turbidity, and dissolved oxygen. In this off-campus teaching, we saw the difficulty of sewage treatment and the process of recycling. What impressed the children was that they saw many rags, peels, and bones that cannot be decomposed in water. For this reason, the children are more aware that there is only one Earth, and protecting their home starts with them.

Pei-Hsin Home not only provides a safe haven for children to relax physically and mentally but also stabilizes and regulates their lives in their school and rest. The children’s broken hearts are healed and knowledge of good life is built through many courses. When the youngsters like chicks gradually spreading their wings, learning to fly and leaving their nests, they will be able to overcome the difficulties in the future with their positive experiences they have learned in Pei-Hsin Home.

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Th mission of i-ro i-ro Children's Home is to help marginalized children to have their family structure restored and family relationship rebuilt; as well as provides parents with good parenting education and family support so that children are provided with consistent care while they grow up in a stable community environment.

Cher, who just started university this year, said to the social worker, " I want to be like you to have a career helping others in the future. I wouldn't be here without your help. "

Cher was brought up by her father who is a single parent. She moved to the north with her father when she was in the second grade. When her father was at work, Cher was often left alone at home and hungry. To provide Cher with better care, her father entrusted Cher to the care of her grandmother. Her teacher in the supplementary class knew her family situation and treated her like her own daughter. Not only did she educate Cher as a teacher, she also provided Cher the companionship like a mother did. A strong bond was established between them. When Cher was in junior high school, her beloved grandma passed away. With the sudden lose of a dear family member, she changed. She became depressed, indifferent and lost her confidence. Seeing that Cher's father struggled with busy work while raising a child on his own, as well as acknowledging the need to address the trauma suffered by Cher after the loss of a loved one, the teacher discussed with Cher's father to let Cher come to i-ro i-ro Children's Home where she can once again experience the feeling of "home". She was also connected with the Mustard Seed Mission to receive support and scholarship. Her life and education were thus improved and stabilized. i-ro i-ro Children's Home is like a big family for her. Cher feels the encouragement and support of everyone, and the hole in her heart gradually healed.

Six years quickly went by. From junior high school to university, Cher has experienced life transformation. She has transformed from being low self-esteemed and indifferent to being self-confident and passionate, from feeling loneliness and despair in life to become full of hope and courage. Thanks to the dedicated companionship and education of i-ro i-ro Children's Home, she has turned her life around and now ready to fly high.

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Organization Information

The Mustard Seed Mission

Location: New Taipei City, Taiwan - Taiwan
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @MustardSeedTW
Project Leader:
The Mustard Seed Mission Taiwan
New Taipei City , Taiwan
$4,980 raised of $280,000 goal
52 donations
$275,020 to go
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